Injuries and New guys
Nov 2, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham (6) walks on the field before the game against the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports
Unfortunately injuries are a part of every training camp and the Steelers certainly weren’t immune this year. Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham was lost for the year after suffering a knee injury in the Hall of Fame game.
Suisham has been the most accurate kicker in Steelers history and prided himself on his ability to make ‘football plays’ outside of just kicking. Unfortunately the downside to making those ‘football plays’ is that some of them can lead to injury. Attempting a tackle during a return Suisham injured his ACL and meniscus.
The Steelers placed Suisham on injured reserve and signed kicker Garrett Hartley to replace him for the season. Just in case anyone wonders they do take the kickers down to kick at Heinz Field as part of the try out rather than kicking in Latrobe, which would be useless to determine how well of a fit they’d be for the team.
Hartley spent five seasons with the New Orleans Saints and was on their Super Bowl XLIV championship team in 2009. Last season he signed late in the year with the Cleveland Browns and went 3 for 3 on his field goal attempts. He made his Steelers debut in their preseason game against the Jaguars and connected from 48 and 29 yards.
Not necessarily due to the injury of Senquez Golson but certainly helping the cornerback situation was the acquisition of Eagles cornerback Brandon Boykin. Boykin came to the Steelers via trade for a conditional fifth round draft pick in 2016.
The Boykin trade came at a good time for the Steelers as Golson’s surgery hadn’t been done yet so the Steelers didn’t have to give up all that much to attain a young cornerback, the best cornerback on the Eagles’ roster for the last two seasons.
The Steelers being proactive to trade for Boykin could prove to be one of their best moves this offseason as the Steelers’ secondary was always going to be a question mark until they have the chance to prove themselves on the field.
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